There is no need to ask what is on everyone's mind this month. It seems that about 90% of the news on TV and posts on facebook relate to the pandemic caused by the novel coronavirus. Kids are home due to closed schools. Adults are working from home, or in some instances, laid off. Schedules are in flux. Confusion, panic, fear, anger, frustration.... any of this sound familiar?
It seems there is so much negativity, that we forget things. We forget that our kids feel stress when their schedules are thrown off. We forget to relax because we are so inundated with constant updates. We forget to connect with other people simply because we can't be there in person. We forget, we forget, we forget.
Do me a favor. STOP. I mean literally, right now. Take two minutes, close your eyes, and just BREATHE. In through your nose for a count of four, hold for four, out through your mouth for four, and wait for four. Repeat. For two little minutes. Focus on the in and out of your breath. This is called "box breathing" and it helps to lower levels of cortisol, the main hormone released in response to stress.
Now is the time to let go of politics and work together. Now is the time to
remember. Remember how wondrously adaptable children are, and the way they see all this through fresh eyes. Take a walk with them. Make an obstacle course in your yard, or even in your house. Read to them. Make memories that they will remember for years to come. Remember that those who are immune compromised may not be able to get out at all. Give them a call and check on them. Parents, grandparents, friends; we need to remember to stay connected, even when we have to be separated. And most importantly, remember that together, we will get through this. It may not be easy, but we will. Because if we learned anything from Tropical Storm Irene, it's this:
WE ARE VERMONT STRONG.
Stay healthy and safe.